Don’t expect 2020 budget to bring hope – Minority to Ghanaians

File[/caption] The Minority in Parliament says Ghana’s economy has been characterized by a deteriorating standard of living for the average Ghanaian, among other ills. Ranking Member on the Finance Committee Cassiel Ato Forson insinuates that this must come as a bad news to expectant Ghanaians over the 2020 budget. The budget for next year is scheduled to be presented in Parliament by the Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, on Wednesday, November 13. The budget is expected to wrap up the first term of the Akufo-Addo government, aiming to inspire hope among the good people of Ghana. But Mr Ato Forson declares: “Ladies and gentlemen, unfortunately we do not expect this budget to bring us hope.” He told journalists in Accra on Monday that the past three years have seen Ghanaians suffer increasing cost in utility, particularly energy, water and petrol. Next year will be no different, he emphasised. What is more, the Member of Parliament for Ajumako-Enyan-Esiam Constituency continued, collapse of businesses accompanied by job losses has made standard of living difficult. Nonetheless, Mr Ato Forson called on the president, through the Minister of Finance, to lessen the tax burdens on Ghanaians as promised prior to the assumption of office. “We’ll urge the president through the Minister for Finance to keep his promise of removing the 2% Special Import Levy in the coming budget. “Furthermore, government in the year 2017 decided to extend the National Fiscal Stabilisation Levy of 5% to December 2019,” he said, a move which was a marked departure from the New Patriotic Party (NPP) mantra of moving the economy from taxation to production. “We will like to appeal to the president through the Finance Minister to use the opportunity to address the plight and the suffering of the average Ghanaian who cannot keep up with the increase in tax such as Communications Service Tax, tariff increases in water and not to come to the floor with the usual slogan we have inherited since 2017.”

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